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Which symphony do you prefer?

  • Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 1 in G minor "Winter Daydreams", Op. 13 (1866)

    Votes: 7 29.2%
  • Sibelius: Symphony No. 1 in E minor, Op. 39 (1899)

    Votes: 17 70.8%
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In the spirit of rooting for the underdog, I voted for the Tchaikovsky. I know some people (even the composer himself) say it is an "immature" work, but I love its freshness and unpretentiousness. I find it highly listenable and it puts a smile on my face every time. My favorite recording is the 1965 Dorati/London SO on Mercury Living Presence. BTW, I really like Sib 1, too.
 

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As much as I love the Tchaikovsky, I much prefer Sibelius here. One of my favorites, and I'd take it over the 3rd or the 4th every day of the year. No dull moments at all, in all its duration the music is continuously brilliant and has an epic/impassioned feel to it that appeals to me enormously.
 

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Tchaikovsky's first has a great atmospheric beginning but it is uneven and loses focus, especially in the finale. Sibelius 1st is, I think, overall more original and "Sibelian" than his 2nd.
But Brahms or Mahler vs. Sibelius would be as easy a choice for me. Brahms vs. Mahler would be difficult; a most solid, very accomplished piece against a brilliantly innovative but somewhat flawed one.
 

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Tchaikovsky by a light year. It's always been my favourite symphony by that composer and indeed was briefly a long time ago my favourite symphony by any composer. It has a freshness and naivety which are more appealing than than any of his others. Svetlanov is an easy winner. Sibelius 1st is influenced by Tchaik. anyway and although it has its merits, is not remotely in the same class as the mature Sib. from no. 4 onwards. Compare Tchaik 4-6 and Sib 4-6 and I'd give it to Sibelius in each case.
 

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A few months ago I ran a game of 1st symphonies.

Top Ten:

1. Mahler - Symphony no. 1
2. Brahms - Symphony no. 1
3. Sibelius - Symphony no. 1
4. Tchaikovsky, P. - Symphony no. 1
5. Dutilleux - Symphony no. 1
6. Elgar - Symphony no. 1
7. Scriabin - Symphony no. 1
8. Weinberg - Symphony no. 1
9. Schumann - Symphony no. 1 "Spring"
10. Kalinnikov - Symphony no. 1
10. Martinů - Symphony no. 1

Personally, I would have replaced the Tchaikovsky and Kalinnikov with Shostakovich, Bax, or maybe Vaughan Williams.
 

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A few months ago I ran a game of 1st symphonies.

Top Ten:

1. Mahler - Symphony no. 1
2. Brahms - Symphony no. 1
3. Sibelius - Symphony no. 1
4. Tchaikovsky, P. - Symphony no. 1
5. Dutilleux - Symphony no. 1
6. Elgar - Symphony no. 1
7. Scriabin - Symphony no. 1
8. Weinberg - Symphony no. 1
9. Schumann - Symphony no. 1 "Spring"
10. Kalinnikov - Symphony no. 1
10. Martinů - Symphony no. 1

Personally, I would have replaced the Tchaikovsky and Kalinnikov with Shostakovich, Bax, or maybe Vaughan Williams.
Wow.

Wow, no Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, or Schubert.
 

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Not really all that familiar with any of the 1st Symphonies other than Beethoven's.

I'm more surprised that the heavyweights of the Classical era were shut out of the Top Ten so easily.

I mean, really, was Weinberg's 1st better than Haydn's 1st?
Yes, they were the heavyweights but their 1st symphonies were not.

Looks like you're not a fan of Weinberg's 1st. For me, it's one of the most enjoyable 1st symphonies.
 

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Yes, they were the heavyweights but their 1st symphonies were not.

Looks like you're not a fan of Weinberg's 1st. For me, it's one of the most enjoyable 1st symphonies.
Nope, that's not it. I've never heard Weinberg's 1st Symphony. In fact, I don't recall ever hearing the name Weinberg before. Or maybe I have, but have just forgotten.

.

So . . . Googled and Youtubed him

Mieczysław Weinberg, Symphony No. 1 "To the Red Army", 1942. It impressed Shostakovich.
Not performed until February 11, 1967, twenty-five years after its composition. I'll take a listen.


 
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